Open Letter to the Leering Menfolk

Women are not mentally deficient — in point of fact, when it comes to body language and other non-verbal cues, we kick your asses. Science even says so. And when it comes to the looks directed our way, we know what’s going on a hell of a lot more often than you give us credit for.

So, no. “Open admiration” and casting me in your mental porno not the same thing. And yes, I can tell the difference.

Lookin’ at you, dude trying to peer down my blouse.

Lookin’ at you, boy behind the counter at KFC.

Lookin’ at you, guy hitting on me at the bus station.

Lookin’ at you, senior citizen who’s out to dinner with his wife.

Lookin’ at you, driver of the car who slowed down to stare at my ass.

Lookin’ at you, teenaged boy telling me how dress while I’m crossing the street.

Lookin’ at you, guy hitting on me while I’m in a gay bar.

And I get it. I’m pretty. I’m not bitching about compliments or admiring glances, here. I’m talking about those of you staring at me with that particular gleam in your eye, the one that won’t let you look at me once or twice and then move on. No, I’m talking about those of you who can’t look elsewhere, whose eyes might wander away briefly but invariably come back to whatever part of me you’re salivating over.

And no; you don’t get to use the way I’m dressed as an excuse. Because it doesn’t matter how I’m dressed — I’ve had those above interactions while in jeans-and-tee as well as skirt-and-blouse combos, in casual dresses, shorts, business attire. I’ve been the target of lust-filled eyes while I was wearing jeans, a baggy sweater and sneakers, with no makeup and my hair scraped away from my face in a ballerina-bun. Clearly, despite the tired argument of “you can’t blame me for looking when you’re obviously dressed to get attention”, there is no way to dress which won’t “attract your attention”. And that means the onus is on you to behave like decent human beings.

If you’re going to look at a woman and let your mind frolick in the gutter, don’t be surprised if you make her uncomfortable, get labelled a creep, or get called out on it. And if/when you do get called out on it, grow a pair and admit it. We don’t appreciate being lied to, especially when the truth is obvious.

And before you claim that you can’t control your thoughts, that is bullshit. If it is not, in fact, bullshit, get thee to a shrink, because that isn’t normal. And you most certainly can control your actions — which includes how long you stare.

I think this goes without saying, but as we live in a world of rampant asshattery, please allow me to state for the record: this is my intellectual property. As such, please do not copy, circulate, edit, alter, take credit for, or otherwise appropriate this material without my express permission. Thank you.

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